The Green Recovery
The COVID-19 pandemic has created such a challenge for all aspects of life and had a serious impact on the global economy. The world stands at an unprecedented and unique precipice wherein a ‘green recovery’ can be kickstarted from the world-wide standstill.
We are in the middle of governments racing toward normalcy to mitigate economic decline and reinvigorate industries and various sectors to avoid a disastrous global recession. All while adapting to the challenge that COVID-19 poses on our everyday lives. When you add the looming threat of climate change our predicament becomes much more daunting.
This is why organisations and political parties are all vying for a ‘green recovery’. Using this unprecedented time to rebuild or recover with a focus on efficiency, sustainability, and responsibility. Simultaneously healing our economies and industries, boosting jobs, and securing a clean future for the next generation.
In the UK, Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his government have begun their campaign to ‘build back better’, with a strong part of this plan focusing on ‘build back greener’. In this post, we will be looking at how the UK has been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and the steps we are taking to get on the path to a ‘green recovery’.
The Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on the UK
Besides the more obvious impacts of COVID-19, there have been severe socioeconomic impacts on the United Kingdom since the beginning of the pandemic. With most sectors only recovering slowly as restrictions ease the future remains uncertain as the support schemes are gradually phased out.
However, the Green Recovery plans from the government show a more hopeful future with a potential better outcome for the GDP and employment.
One positive for the pandemic was the effect on our emissions. We have previously discussed our energy consumption during lockdown, but we have found a more comprehensive graph to show just how drastic the impact of the pandemic was for the CO2 emissions in the UK.
So, you can see the potential for drastic change in CO2 emissions for the UK is very possible. Though this is an extreme case, the outcome remains the same. We can sharply decarbonise the UK’s energy, it simply relies on using less, being more efficient, and making the switch to green, renewable energy. This confirmation is one of the most useful and unexpected impacts that the pandemic has had on the UK.
An overview of ‘The Green Recovery’
The current government is under pressure to ensure that when they set out to ‘build back better’ that they also ‘build back greener’. As both campaigners across the UK, and even the Prince of Wales, are urging the Conservatives to bring the green recovery to the front of their priorities.
So far, under this pressure, Boris Johnson has sworn to ‘reform our system of government’ and promised a green industrial revolution that will lead to ‘hundreds of thousands of jobs’.
Boris has also been quoted as saying:
“History teaches us that events of this magnitude – wars, famines, plagues, events that affect the vast bulk of humanity as this virus has – they don’t just come and go.
“They are, more often than not, the trigger for an acceleration of social and economic change, because we human beings will simply not content ourselves with a repair job.
“We see these moments as the time to learn and to improve on the world that went before and that’s why this government will build back better.”
Can we count on them to do what they’ve said? We think so, one of the key points to the Prime Ministers attempt at the green recover is to power all homes by offshore wind by 2030. This will produce £160 million spent on upgrading ports and infrastructure all over the UK.
So, this is where we currently stand in the green recovery. We can only wait and see whether we actually build back greener or not.
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